I love that my 5 year old asks questions. Sometimes it scares me – like when she asks questions about Santa, or questions relating to mine and her dad’s separation, or when she asks me things I’m just not ready for, but mostly I love it.
I suppose that’s because it gives me an insight into how she thinks, what’s important to her. It’s like an eye into her psyche, a trip into the place where her dreams come from, a peep into her imagination, and I love that it is such a vividl, colourful place, but sometimes it truly tests me.
Miss M: “Mummy, do they have bins in water?
Me: “Errrrm, do you mean like in the sea sweetie?”
Miss M: “Yes. Do they have bins in the sea?”
My head fills with visions of rainbow oil slicks. Decaying sea birds, their limbs twisted by discarded plastics, distorted into macabre portraits of painful death. Or a shimmer of floating, lifeless fish, surrounded by the guilty, the empty cartons, tins and food wrappings. How do you explain that to a 5 year old? How do you tell her that people, people just like us, have done such harm?
So I take a deep breath and…
Miss M: “Because Mummy, if there are no bins, what do mermaids do with all their sweet wrappers?”